Sunday, June 27, 2010


Today I opened my purse in the hopes of finding something...I don't even remember what the something was because I lost track of all thought when I realized that the condition of the inside of my bag could easily land me a Clean House intervention. What would Niecy Nash say about my foolishness??? This bag is out of control. I've got receipts from months ago in here, smashed & half eaten bags of munchies, old grocery lists, happy meal toys, new and used kleenex, lollipops from the bank, lollipops from the hair salon, lollipops from the post office, crumpled coupons long expired, fliers for events that have come and gone, writing utensils and gum for 40 people, enough spare change to buy a new pair of jeans, a flashlight, an empty Ibuprofen container (which reminds me I need to add that to my grocery where'd I put that?), an old chapstick...ugh, the list of random items goes on and on. Adding to the problem is my habit of throwing a heavy camera on top of all this clutter, which then acts as a trash compactor making more room for this madness.

My mission today is to face this monster. Whatever it takes, I will get to the bottom of this beast of a bag and I will get it together. I will empty, I will pitch and then I will question each item I put back into my purse. ("Do I really need 27 pens in here?"). When I have tackled this mountain of madness, I will pat myself on the back and say, 'Good girl! You finally have your life in order!' (Okay, maybe not my entire life, but I gotta start somewhere, right?)

Wish me luck. I'm going in.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Vacation Bible School & Sports Camp Week 2010!!

Today was Day 4 of Vacation Bible School & Sports Camp at First Baptist Church! This is my second year taking pictures of all the activities occurring throughout the week. I have already taken close to a bazillion images and we still have one day to go! Phew!! Here are a handful that help to capture the week:

Everywhere I look this week, I am reminded of my brother-in-law John, who lost his battle with cancer almost a year ago. While he was alive, he quietly and generously contributed to the church's sports camp scholarship fund which helped keep tuition down for all kids, and also provided full scholarships to children who couldn't afford to attend. John would be so proud to know his work continues.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Flower power.

The older I get, the more I love flowers.

They have a calming effect on me...maybe even a hypnotizing effect. I find myself stopping to study one little flower and before I know it, I have lost track of the clock. Mealtimes have come and gone...sometimes even holidays because I've been staring at flowers too long.

I like studying all the little flower parts. The pedals, the leaves, the colors...I love it all. And with a camera in hand, playing with depth of field to get dreamy shots...I'm in heaven. heaven will be full of flowers.

And in my heaven, I will be able to keep flowers alive longer than a day or two. But that's for another post.

Hope your day is full of things you enjoy :)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Surprise vacation.

The old central air conditioning unit in our house died last week. For someone who grew up without A/C, you'd think I'd be okay. But I was completely panicked. 'How will I sleep?', 'I hate sweating', 'OMG, my hair'....were some of the thoughts that raced through my head. After the A/C guys delivered the harsh news (they would need about a week before they could replace the unit), I slowly came to accept my reality. My sticky, humid, sweaty reality. So, a week went by, during which time I dug out my window screens and fans, wore my hair in a ponytail, and spent a ton of time outside with my kids. I did more yard work in a week than I've done in ten years, we played in the sandbox every day, we walked our dogs (my mother just rolled off her chair reading that, I'm sure), we picked every wild daisy we could find. And you know what? I liked it. I liked being able to hear the birds chirping all day. I liked feeling the cross breeze in our living room. I liked (correction: loved) not cooking. And I loved not fussing over my hair. In retrospect, it was very much like a vacation.

Two days ago, we got our new air conditioning unit. As the A/C guys made their final adjustments and checked to make sure the house was cooling down, I joked that I was planning on leaving the thermostat set at 58 degrees just because I could. But when the work vans pulled out of the driveway, I immediately shut the unit off and opened all the doors and windows again.
No need to rush home from vacation, right?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Does it pop?

I'm up way past my bedtime playing with photoshop. Where are my photography people (or any people for that matter) because I need some feedback. If you're reading this, that means you. Give me your thoughts. The top image is SOOC (straight out of camera) - no editing. Bottom image is edited with some photoshop goodness. I'm looking for a pop in the image. How does it strike you? Feedback please.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A week in pictures.

Okay peeps, we've got some catching up to do and a lot of ground to cover in a short amount of time. As I sit and pound at the keyboard, I have two hungry children invading my creative space...they are like two sharks circling before a deep sea attack. "Mommmm, I'm starrrrrving" and "Can I have something....anything to eat?" is what I'm up against here. I'm going to cover this fast, so pay attention, before they tear my arm off and eat it for supper.

Mr. Sam graduated from his Early Learners Class. In a nutshell, the program involved two patient teachers, 12 adorable little kids, and an audience full of cameras. Nobody wanted to miss a single second of the 4-minute show. This picture cracks me up because it totally screams preschool graduation.

Speaking of huge events in Sam's life, we celebrated his 4th birthday. Oh, my aching heart. My baby is such a big kid all of a sudden. He's an underwear-donning, bicycle-riding, baseball-loving, joke-cracking fool these days! What a fantastic age.
Bug season has officially started. The Patton boys love nothing more than a good bug hunt in the summer. Today we found the mother of all spiders {cringe} while cleaning the garage. At this time, we are debating on what to do with it. Suggestions range from shaking the jar until the spider dies of blunt force trauma to the head (Sam's suggestion) to dumping it out on the driveway and poking it to death with a stick (Will's suggestion). I am pushing to keep it for use as a learning tool (when did I turn into such a dork?).

My cringing face was wiggling the camera too much to get a good shot, so this will have to do. Spiders just creep me out.
In addition to the start of bug season, it is now baseball season for Will. Dave is helping to coach, which is fun to watch. Go Huskies!

Moving on to equally exciting topics, the kids have determined that I'm a total sucker for buying anything that we can watch grow. Pictured above is a small aquarium full of sea monkeys. That's right. Sea. Monkeys. Google them. They're real. And I cannot believe we are watching them grow. My in-laws, who have age-appropriate eyesight, think we're watching a cup of water. Can't say I blame them.

We are still (yes, still) plugging along with the house building. I have removed all emotion from the process at this point and am in complete decision maker mode. I don't even recognize myself anymore. I see choices. I bark 'yup' or 'hell no' and move on. Snap, snap. Let's getter done.

My name sister (Florida's very own, extra special Susan Patton) sent me her copy of the Photoshop Elements book last week. Pictured above is Will pretending to be me. It's a great read, what can I say? (Susan, thanks again - I'm loving it!!!) This brings me to the last item on my show-n-tell list.

My camera and I met the most amazing family on Sunday. Lucky me got to spend a little time capturing some images of this fantastic foursome. They were so cute, I almost wish I could shrink them to doll size so I could take them home with me. Trust me. If remotely possible, I'd do it. They were just that cute.

Sweet Baby C. Ten-days-old and nothing but good.

Look at these little lips. Killing me!!!

I challenge you to think of one thing cuter than a sleeping baby. Time's up. Impossible.

You know I'm a sucker for hand shots.

And let's not forget big brother G.

Okay, seriously? Those toddler teeth, those little curls...I'm in love.

Here are the big boys, horsing around. Love this shot!!

(Thank you J&J for inviting me into your home.
You have an incredible family :)
Considering I'm now typing with my nose and one ear (the kids really did rip off my arms) I think I did okay. Hope you all had a great week!